If outcomes matter the most, who owns the process won't matter as much
Client-owned. Infosys-managed. Or managed by any other service provider. The Infosys Process Progression Model (PPM) was designed with a "value for all processes" philosophy -- without any bias toward who is delivering a process.
Why did we choose to go this way? Because we believe that the sum of the parts make up the whole. Any change, however localized, however small, impacts global operations on a larger scale. And having handled processes end-to-end in various functions, we at Infosys BPO often have a view of processes that are upstream or downstream to the ones we manage. We can study these process environments - client-owned or service provider-operated, and then recommend changes and provide a framework to effect these that will move clients to global best-in-class. And the evolution happens in three stages: P1 - Noiseless processes, P2 - Process excellence, and P3 - Business outcomes.
While the focus of P1 is typically processes that Infosys BPO manages, P2 and P3 are in higher value realms. Let's say a client wants to move to P2 and P3, but Infosys BPO doesn't manage their end-to-end processes in a function. Does that make P2 and P3 unattainable? The answer is absolutely not. If client organizations are committed to the transformation journey and work closely with us, we can assess their state of operations, define a smooth a smooth roadmap, and then deliver the transformation.
How collaboration makes P2 and P3 attainable
How does one progress to P2 and then P3 levels? Here, a client's active involvement in the transformation journey is essential. The PPM end state (P3) of 'business outcomes' is possible when the transformation roadmap is identified for the client and it covers the upstream and the downstream processes managed by Infosys. And charting this roadmap requires complete collaboration and support from the client.
Can all engagements reach P3? No, it is possible only if the client sees value in maturing to a P3 level. Some clients want us to only meritoriously manage the 'activities' outsourced to us and not the out-of-scope activities. However, this doesn't limit our ability to work with a client in a consultative manner for out-of-scope activities. And many clients today are looking to leverage our consulting services even as they visualize partnering with us in transforming or achieving the end-to-end business outcomes of their organization. In such scenarios, we take on the role of a consultative transformation partner for all processes while continuing to deliver the ones in scope.
Two cases in point
Consider a typical F&A engagement where the scope of work is Accounts Payable (AP). What will it take to get to P3? Here, true transformation is not just about processing an invoice or making a payment 'accurately' and 'on-time'. The true transformation is possible when we work with a client in improving vendor compliance, having standard vendor management process (including the scope of activities managed by client's procurement and sourcing teams), automating the process by leveraging an e-invoicing solution (by Infosys or any third party) and digitization of invoices, automatic invoice data capture, assisted two/three-way matching, workflow for approvals/clarification and reporting as per client requirements. All the above mentioned scope of sub activities may or may not be within the scope of Infosys. However, it impacts the end-to-end AP process of the client. The PPM model details how a client can attain P3 stage in effectively managing the AP process and impacting the relevant business metrics like reducing the cost of processing of an invoice, working capital improvement, etc.
You may say, "P3 seems far away. What kind of success is possible at the P2 stage?"One case study is that of a client for whom we are handling the customer service and industry solutions processes (including search engine operation and display advertising). The engagement today is at P2 stage and we have been able impact customer's business metrics and delivered savings of more than 13 million USD in less than 3 years. This impact was possible with the close collaboration and support of the client business owner and their operations team.
What clients and analysts are saying
As we are onboarding more and more of our clients on PPM, we are observing them to be open and enthusiastic about leveraging PPM. They are enthusiastic in defining transformation roadmaps for attaining P3 stage at the earliest. They are keen on developing the path of transformation and PPM is making this journey transparent and open for them.We also have clients were the client processes are completely automated and such engagements are already at P3 stage.For such clients,PPM is enabling them to definetheir vision of future transformation and evolving new milestones of process maturity, leveraging best practices of the industry and benchmarking the processes against industry standards.
Our clients are excited about the fact that PPM is quantifiable based on 30+ different parameters, comes with a complete dashboard during various stages of the engagement, and clearly traces the impact of processes to quality, people and business outcomes.
Recently John Willmott, CEO of NelsonHall blogged about PPM. He mentioned PPM is acting as a 'high level dashboard and common reference model for communicating with clients'. He also said, 'Infosys is aiming to use PPM to judge processes on an "end" basis across both client-operated and Infosys-operated processes and establish a common reference model for assessing process maturity and identifying future process transformation'.
The best part about PPM is: it is process owner-agnostic. Who's handling the process is not as important as much as how the process will be transformed? And PPM provides a clear, transparent framework to make it happen. Some would say that's as good as process transformation gets. What about you?